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Varsity football beats Sonoma Valley in first playoff game

Nate+Kelly+%2812%29+looks+to+throw+the+ball+to+a+teammate.+The+team+scored+a+total+of+six+touchdowns+during+this+game.
Nate Kelly (12) looks to throw the ball to a teammate. The team scored a total of six touchdowns during this game.

Nate Kelly (12) looks to throw the ball to a teammate. The team scored a total of six touchdowns during this game.

Eric Fang

Eric Fang

Nate Kelly (12) looks to throw the ball to a teammate. The team scored a total of six touchdowns during this game.

by Eric Fang, Global Editor

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Varsity football crushed the Sonoma Valley Dragons 56 – 0 in the team’s first playoff game of the season Saturday night at home. This was the first time Harker has had the privilege of hosting a playoff game. They continue their winning streak to improve their record to a historic 10 – 0.

The Eagles opted to receive the ball after the coin toss at the beginning of the match. On just their second play of the game, wide receiver Jared Anderson (11) ran 56 yards caught a pass from quarterback Nate Kelly (12) to score Harker’s first of eight touchdowns. Kicker Dominic Cea (12) kicked an extra point after the touchdown.

Harker wide receiver Marcus Tymous (11) ran the ball into the Dragon’s end zone in the middle of the first quarter for a touchdown with a valid extra point by Dominic.

Sonoma Valley’s punt was deflected leading to a first down for the Eagles. Harker running back Aaron Smith (11) scored a subsequent touchdown, and after a sack by wide receiver Angel Cervantes (12), Jared scored his second touchdown of the match by running an astonishing 81 yards during a punt return. Dominic kicked valid extra points after every touchdown. The score stood at 28 – 0 by the end of the first quarter with the Eagles boasting a strong lead over Sonoma Valley.

Nate believes the team’s success in the early quarters of the game can be attributed to the team’s extensive practices prior to the game.

“We executed on both sides of the ball, on offense, defense and special teams,” Nate said. “I really believe that our accomplishments are a direct result of our preparation which has allowed us to dominate other teams throughout the season.”

The Eagles continued their scoring streak into the second quarter. Marcus secured two back to back touchdowns and Jared scored his second touchdown of the night. Dominic extended Harker’s advantage with extra points after every touchdown. He kicked eight through the course of the night.

Eric Fang
Kicker Dominic Cea (12) kicks the ball for an extra point conversion after a touchdown. The team continued their historic season by winning their first playoff game.

The Eagles enjoyed a 49 point lead over Sonoma Valley by halftime and initiated the “continuous clock” mercy rule which runs the clock after plays where the clock would normally stop such as after an incomplete pass, reducing the game time considerably in the third and fourth quarters of the match.

Harker varsity cheerleaders performed a routine for the audience during the halftime intermission. Bobby Schick (12), Neil Ramaswamy (11) and upper school technician Alejandro Osorio played the tenor saxophone, drums and baritone saxophone, respectively, throughout the game. The sophomore class organized a fundraiser for their class during the game as well and sold beverages and candy and provided face paint.

The third and fourth quarters proceeded slowly compared to the initial quarters. Eagle wide receiver Mitchell Kole (12) picked off Sonoma Valley’s ball and Devin Keller (10) scored his first touchdown in a varsity game. Dominic missed a field goal in the middle of the third quarter.

The final score stood at 56 – 0 with the Eagles advancing to the next round of playoffs strong.

“We’ve got to move to the next round, because for us to get this 56-0 win and dominate the other team on our home turf is huge,” Jared said. “It’s a great moral boost for the team and we’re planning on performing the exact same way next week.”

Their next game will be at 7 p.m. against Piedmont High School at home.

Piedmont beat Lower Lake high school 24 – 19 on Friday, and the Eagles are currently in the third seat of the division four bracket with Piedmont in the sixth seed. First seed St. Bernard’s high school got a pass in the initial games but will face eighth seed San Marin high school next Saturday.

“I’m proud of them, and it has nothing to do with football,” head coach Mike Tirabassi said. “I’m proud of the way they carry themselves, I’m proud of the gentlemen they’ve become and I’m proud of how they look at their responsibilities to represent the community. They take that very seriously and do everything possible to represent Harker well. I tell them that, but I couldn’t be prouder of the men they’ve become.”

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Varsity football beats Sonoma Valley in first playoff game